Idaho father laments death of medical resident son after traffic stop

Ryan Rich appeared to have so much to live for.

He was finishing his medical residency in Las Vegas and planned to return to his family home in Idaho to begin his practice. Rich was a 33-year-old professional with a promising career.

Rich died Jan. 4 after being shot with a Taser fired by a Nevada Highway Patrol trooper during an altercation after a traffic stop along Interstate 15. Rich, who suffered from seizure disorder, died in a local hospital a short time afterward. Although the death has been ruled a homicide, according to published reports, it has not yet been determined whether it was justified or criminal.

News accounts said the car Rich was driving had struck other vehicles before the traffic stop. He was shot with the Taser after struggling with the veteran trooper.

Rich’s father, Randy Rich of Rupert, Idaho, told a Boise television reporter his son was a driven, goal-oriented person who didn’t use drugs or alcohol. The father was sure a pending toxicology report would prove that.

“When that report comes out, I’m convinced and you can etch it in stone,” he said, “there will be nothing that he’s not supposed to already have already been taking. It’s absolutely devastating. Parents are not supposed to outlive their children. It’s a very difficult thing to go through.”

MOB TOUR: Give Robert Allen credit — or at least a tip of the fedora.

His Vegas Mob Tour idea is generating high-profile ink. The Los Angeles Times published an article this week on the tour, which does a drive-by at the scene of a number of mob-linked crimes.

The 21/2-hour tour is led by guides wearing pinstriped suits and fedoras.

Among the notorious names dropped during the tour: Benjamin Siegel, Anthony Spilotro, Frank Rosenthal, Frank Cullotta, and even the late rapper Tupac Shakur.

PLAZA PLANS: You have to like the confidence in the face of difficult economic times of the Elad Group, which received procedural approval for The Plaza project this week from the Clark County Commission.

Once completed on the former site of the Frontier, it’s sure to take the Strip to an even higher level.

The multibillion-dollar resort and residential project will feature a staggering seven towers.

GAGE TRIAL: This week’s mistrial in the federal conspiracy and fraud trial of attorney Noel Gage is generating speculation about which side will blink first and move to settle the case prior to a second trial.

The truth is, both sides already have. There was talk of settlement negotiations in the trial’s waning days.

SHOTS OF IRONY: The dangerous irony of the week comes from an unlikely location, Children’s Memorial Park at Rainbow Boulevard and Gowan Road, where a barrage of gunfire echoed on Tuesday night within range of baseball diamonds in use by members of the Lone Mountain Little League. A police report was filed, but, thankfully, no one was injured. If those bullets had traveled horizontally instead of vertically, children’s memorials would probably be in the planning stages.

TOUGH ON CRIME: Here’s an interesting reaction to recent tales of teen violence in the community. Master Michael H. Evans is offering a free crime prevention seminar at Desert Sun Tae Kwon Do at 1725 S. Rainbow Blvd., Suite 22, at 10 a.m. Saturday.

ON THE BOULEVARD: The L.A. Times reports some of the Strip casino suite scenes in the new blackjack movie “21” were shot in the Las Vegas suburb of … Boston. … The documentary “Where I Stand: The Hank Greenspun Story” is set for a special screening Tuesday at the Green Valley Ranch Regal Cinemas. Do you suppose the Review-Journal’s movie critic, Carol Cling, will be invited?

BOULEVARD II: A group of local doctors, tired of reading all the negative reports about a few Southern Nevada physicians, is lobbying for a little positive press about the general state of the medical profession in the valley. … Speaking of lobbying, why does it seem that almost every time Gov. Jim Gibbons receives criticism these days, we see a news release from state Sen. Bob Beers supporting him? It happened again after Gibbons recovered his own fumble in the ongoing Endoscopy Center of Southern Nevada mess. I remember when Beers was proud to be recognized as the most independent Republican in the state.

Have an item for the Bard of the Boulevard? E-mail comments and contributions to or call (702) 383-0295.

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